Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Microstory 4: The Scorpion and the Fox

One day, a turtle, a frog, and a fox are sitting at the bank of a river. A scorpion comes along and asks if one of them would carry him across the river. The turtle is hesitant. "How do I know you won't sting me?" the turtle asks. "Because then we would both drown," answers the scorpion. "I'm sorry. I can't risk that," replies the turtle. The scorpion turns to the frog who hops away without a word. "I can carry you," says the fox. The fox carries the scorpion across the river and then swims back. A snake slithers up and tells the scorpion that he probably would not have been able to keep himself from biting the fox by the time they reached the bank. "Why didn't you sting him once you were safely across?" the snake asks. "Isn't that what scorpions do?" "I am not bound by my nature," the scorpion replies. "I make my own choices." Back on the first side, the turtle asks why the fox agreed to do that when it was so dangerous. "Animals like that believe it is best to perish if it means the death of an enemy," the turtle says. "I chose to give him the benefit of the doubt," the fox answers. "Not because it was in his best interests anyway, but because not helping an enemy would reflect poorly on me more than it would on him."

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